Simply put, I love to cook. I didn’t always love to cook. In fact, it was a struggle for me to focus in the kitchen when my mom was trying to explain the names of various spices and when and how to use them. However, she continued to insist that I stand in the kitchen with her while she made meals. Little did I realize that, while I thought I was being held hostage in the kitchen and forced to chop veggies or make rotlas, my mom was filling my head with stories from when she first married into my dad’s family, the anxiety she felt when she had to cook her first meal for her in-laws, the joy she experienced when she visited her maternal home, the trials and tribulations of raising me and my brother while my dad was struggling with his family business. Now, when I cook some of the same meals that my mom did when I was younger, I reflect back to those stories and I realize how each meal brings back amazing memories of bonding with my mom.
I am also very fortunate to have similar moments of bonding with my grandmother-in-law, mother-in-law, sisters-in-law, friends , other members of both my husband’s family as well as my own. I look forward to moments in the kitchen when I can share our family stories with my children in the hopes that, when they are older and cooking in their own homes, they will feel a similar sense of bond to me, to our family history and to our multi-generational recipes. I hope that it instills in them the core family values that can’t always be taught, but have to be felt.
My love of cooking and recipe creation has grown from an anguished feeling of “Oh Mom! Do I HAVE to help you cook?! Why can’t I just read!” to the excitement of “Let’s see what we can cook up next!”. It wasn’t until I started cooking for my own family that I became curious about the benefits of authentic Indian spices and how I could be versatile with them. As I experimented with different recipes, I started becoming confident in my ability to create flavorful, savory meals, both Indian and non-Indian. I also realized that I was truly becoming a warrior in the kitchen, literally and figuratively.
WarriorInTheKitchen.com was created to document and share multi-generational recipes that I implement in my own kitchen on a daily basis, and the stories that go along with those recipes.